RTTNews - Stocks are seen struggling for support in the Korean market on Thursday with weak cues from Wall Street and weakness exhibited by other markets in the Asia-Pacific region forcing investors to take a cautious approach.
The benchmark index KOSPI, trading in the negative terrain since the opening bell, is currently trading at 1,426, down 9.36 points or 0.65% from its previous close. The index had ended 7.49 points up at 1,438 yesterday.
Technology stocks are trading weak, with Hynix Semiconductor and LG Electronics drifting down by over 5% and 3% respectively. Heavyweight Samsung Electronics is trading lower by nearly 2% while LG Display LCD is down by 0.5%.
In the banking space, Korea Exchange Bank and KB Financial are trading with modest losses, while Woori Finance and Shinhan Financial are trading higher by 1% and 2.2% respectively.
Shipbuilding stocks Hyundai Heavy Industries and Daewoo Shipbuilding are trading lower by 2.8% and 3%, respectively. Samsung Heavy Industries is up by about 0.5% while bulk carrier STX Pan Ocean is trading 2.8% down.
Among automobile stocks, Kia Motors is down sharply by 5.4%. Ssangyong Motor is up wit a modest gain, while Hyundai Motors is trading with a minor loss.
Steel stocks Hyundai Steel and POSCO are down by around 2.5%. Oil stocks SK Holdings and S-Oil are trading modestly higher, and energy stock KEPCO is also up in positive territory with a modest gain. Airlines and telecom stocks are trading sharply lower.
Among other markets in the Asia-Pacific region, only Taiwan is trading firm. The Indonesian market is trading flat while markets in Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Shanghai, Hong Kong and Japan are trading sharply lower.
Stock markets across the Asia-Pacific region had finished mixed on Wednesday. Japan's benchmark Nikkei 225 Index rose by 0.5 percent, while Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index fell 0.3 percent.
On Wall Street, stocks failed to sustain gains and ended modestly lower on Wednesday with several participants choosing to stay away from the market after recent gains. The U.S. treasury secretary, while sounding optimistic regarding the recovery of the much-battered financial sector, said a full recovery will take time.
The major averages all closed slightly lower after a late day sell-off dragged the indices into negative territory. The Dow closed lower by 52.81 points at 8422.04, the Nasdaq finished down by 6.70 points at 1727.84, and the S&P 500 slipped by 4.66 points to 903.47.
Oil prices registered fresh six-month intra-day highs and closing highs, spurred by a second straight decline in weekly inventories. Crude oil inventories fell by 2.1 million barrels in the week ended May 15. Experts had forecast a decline of about 1.5 million barrels of crude oil. Crude contracts settled more than 3% higher at just above $62 per barrel.
Major European markets closed Wednesday's session mixed. The French CAC 40 Index finished up 0.8 percent and the German DAX Index also closed up, rising by 1.6 percent on the session. On the other hand, the U.K.'s FTSE 100 Index closed down by 0.3 percent.
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